Metal Cutting

Material removal through cutting, turning, milling, drilling, grinding, tapping and more using machinery such as laser cutting systems, plasma cutting systems, oxyfuel cutting systems, milling machines, drill presses, lathes, horizontal machining centers, vertical machining centers, turning centers, multitasking machines, electrical discharge machines and other equipment assisted by Computer Aided Design (CAD), Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM), Computer Numerical Control (CNC), automation and robotics.

A Hole New Game: Precision EDM Holemaking Goes Smaller, Deeper and Faster

While hole-popper systems are quite capable of generating very small accurate holes with good surface quality, advanced EDM drilling systems dramatically increase a shop’s capability to consistently produce tiny holes that are even more accurate and with higher quality.
Experts
Automation/Robotics

Intelligent Factories: The Fourth Industrial Revolution

The biggest challenge for intelligent metalworking shops is implementing the correct individualized manufacturing systems on the software side that can fit their unique needs and provide competitive advantages.
A new era of highly efficient, flexible and customizable mass production requires software and analytical systems that turn the deluge of data produced by intelligent factories into useful and valuable information.
CAD/CAM Software

CAD/CAM Machining Software: The Latest Trends and Advances

Figure 1. CAMWorks 2014 uses toolpath simulation for an effective review: The tool vectors for the toolpaths can be viewed during Step-through simulation, making it easier to review 5-axis toolpaths. Shops can use a WIP (work-in-process) model as a start-up stock when simulating sections of a toolpath to shorten the review time.
Nothing is changing faster or more profoundly than the software used to design and machine parts. To help shops keep up with the latest competitive advances being introduced on the shop floor, here is a report on some of the newest CAD/CAM software.
Drilling Machines

Making Natural Gas Clean with a “Hole” Lot of Pressure

A pressure vessel in the mid-fabrication stages. The pressure vessels Mueller Environmental manufacturers measure anywhere from 4 ft to 8 ft in diameter and are made from ½ in to 3 1/2 in thick 5617 rolled steel plate. The diameter and material thickness depends upon the pressure the vessel must withstand. Sometimes pressures can reach as high as 3,000 psi.
Using a modified HMD915 magnetic drill and Industrial Series of Rotabroach Cutters from Hougen enabled Mueller Environmental to cost-effectively develop a patented new system for cleaning natural gas.
Gear Cutting Machines

Gear Production: Higher Speed, Closer Precision

The accuracy of the Fast Gear Alignment function eliminates the need to acquire acoustic signatures during dressing or grinding. Aligning a grinding wheel with a 180 mm diameter gear with 71 helical teeth takes just 0.5 of a second – without any need to acquire acoustic signatures or make manual adjustments. 
Automated threaded wheel grinding on gear production machines has now been boosted by an order of magnitude with increased machining accuracy to DIN class 3.
Grinding Machines

New Honing Process Produces High-Precision in Manufacturing

Single Stroke Honing from Sunnen is a single-pass process that sizes and finishes a bore with a series of progressively larger superabrasive tools adjusted to a pre-set diameter. Single Stroke Honing tools rotate while passing through the bore one time and then withdrawing. The machine's servo-controlled stroking system provides flexibility with adjustable speed and various feed profiles, such as pecking, short stroke, dwell, etc. Column feed and spindle speed can be varied throughout a cycle using the machine control. 
Developed in Europe by Sunnen Products Company, the Single Stroke Honing® process for cast-iron hydraulic valve bodies produces less than 2 µm cylindricity in bores, achieving almost 200 percent more precision than previously possible.
Honing Machines

Smart Honing Lifts Business for Aerospace Hydraulic Pumps

The work envelope of the honing machine shows air-bearing index table in foreground, robot to left, honing spindle and tool upper center, and air gage right. 
This second generation machining business is using a new technology that makes a 60 millionths tolerance look generous. No kidding.
Horizontal Machining Centers

Advanced Machining Allows Subsea Valves To Handle the Pressure

Operating a DMG / Mori Seiki NL2500 at BEL Valves.
BEL Valves uses a variety of DMG / MORI SEIKI machine tools to meet its paramount need for reliability during production. 
Laser Cutting

Micromachining: No More Constraints

Prototyping time for new nozzle designs is reduced from weeks in the machine shop to 24 hours with the R-Drill, dramatically accelerating design optimization and time to market. The R-Drill reduces drilling time by approximately 30 percent while increasing yield to nearly 100 percent, with no need for expensive post-processing to correct HAZ damage.
The latest femtosecond laser technology from Raydiance can reduce cost per part by 20 percent to 50 percent and reduce product design, prototyping and development from months to as little as 24 hours.
Lathes

Hard Thread Turning Shortens The Process Chain

Figure 1. High rigidity allows higher process forces: Hembrug turning machines are especially suitable for high-precision hard turning.
High precision hard turning techniques are enjoying ever greater popularity in the metal processing industry. By shortening cycle times and increasing flexibility, high precision hard turning has advantages over grinding in particular when it comes to processing complicated parts such as spindle nuts or threaded spindles in the hard state.
Machine Controls

Custom CNC Helps Break New Ground

Innovative flying optics can position the XO machine’s laser beam anywhere within a 1.5 x 3 metre working area, to an accuracy of ±0.01 mm.
NUM develops special hardware and software for the XO laser cutter of Favor Laser, marking the company's entry into the high performance end of the market.
Milling Machines

Boring Mill Fuels Energy Sector Expansion for Machine Shop

The dual-pallet, rotary table Giddings & Lewis MC 1600 horizontal boring mill (HBM) from Fives is designed for multi-axis contour milling, precision boring, drilling and tapping. It will produce a variety of large parts for Milwaukee Machine Works, including wind turbine gearbox housings and fluid end manifolds for the oil/gas industry.
Milwaukee Machine Works expands its energy sector business into wind turbine gearbox housings, fluid end manifolds for the oil/gas industry, and other oversized components up to 10 ft long and weighing up to 7,000 lb with a new large capacity dual-pallet Giddings & Lewis MC 1600 from Fives.
Multitasking Machines

A New Look at Pipeline Intervention

Machined pipes in the Badentoy plant. In the pipeline section, the tubes are 2.375 in to 14 in diameter and 40 ft long. They can also be slightly bent, which puts tremendous force on the machine tool bearings and toolpost.
The DMG Mori machine tools used by Hunting Energy Services play a crucial role in manufacturing well intervention equipment and threaded tubulars for the oil and gas industry.
Ram EDM Machines

Corporate Profile: Makino

(Click on image to enlarge it)
An overview of the company and its organization, products, services and capabilities.
Software

How to Simplify Complex Geometry Tool Repair

By enabling the entry point of the grinding wheel to follow the corner radius of the cutting edge, the software now facilitates the grinding of a defined rake angle on complex body forms and on cutting edges which pass from the body of the tool to its tip – a task that was previously extremely difficult to achieve.
A new release of NUMROTO tool grinding software meets the growing challenges of grinding and servicing new generations of complex geometry drills and end mills.
Turning Centers

He Who Brakes, Wins

Automated production at Precima includes batch sizes of 2,000 brake housings per week.
To be able to produce 40,000 brakes a month and maintain consistent quality, Precima invested in four advanced vertical pick-up turning machine tools from EMAG to produce housings for brakes used primarily in wind turbines.
Metal Cutting: Products

Affordable Magnetic Drill Optimizes Power-to-Weight Ratio

Weighing only 22 lb, the Slugger® JHM Short Slugger Portable Magnetic Drill has a gravity-fed coolant bottle that can be easily removed and the lightest, lowest profile of any drill model in its class, making it ideal for use in overhead and upside down drilling.
Priced at $699, the “Short Slugger” from FEIN Power Tools weighs only 22 lb and stands at 11 in with a 430 W motor that is ideal for repetitive drilling in close quarters or as a first-time user’s magnetic drill.

Sneak Preview: IMTS 2014

In Booth W-2496, Vapormatt will launch the Sabre, its new wet blasting system to help small- to medium-volume manufacturers, coating centers and R&D facilities increase their output quality on a range of cutting tools.
To wet your whistle for what lies ahead at the International Manufacturing Technology Show on September 8-13, here’s a small sample of some equipment that you will see exhibited on the show floor at McCormick Place in Chicago.  

Unattended Machining

This automated machine-tending package, designed by Gosiger Automation, features a Fanuc M-10iA six-axis, industrial robot integrated to a Hardinge T-51 CNC multi-function sub-spindle lathe and a Renishaw Equator™ programmable comparative gage.
The ultimate goal in the trend toward greater automation in machine shops is unattended machining. Here is a review of some of the latest integrated machine tool systems that can help shops achieve that goal.